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Michael
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The Royals are by far my favorite team, but other than Gil Meche, name one decent money free agent contract that has worked out even decently well for us? That's why I say they'll only sign more bad contracts when Farnsworth/Cruz/Guillen come off the books next year. Also, remember that part of that money is already spent, because that's when Zack's contract spikes in annual salary. We (and by "we", I mean Dayton Moore and his staff) do a better job drafting and signing amateur talent than they do major league talent. Why? I don't know, but they do. No one can argue that the minor league system is better stocked now than when Allard Baird was here. Instead of taking that money next offseason and spending it on more bad contracts, maybe we should save it so we have enough to sign our young kids long term when that time comes.
And they'll sign $20 million more in bad contracts....remember, this is the Royals we're talking about!
Is John Buck vs. Jason Kendall really the difference between contending vs. not-contending? No. Is playing Brayan Pena vs. Jason Kendall the difference? No. As much as I like Pena's bat, his defense is attrocious. The Royals went into this season looking to improve their defense, which was the worst in baseball last year. Catcher and center field are their top priorities in that regard. Jason Kendall is not the greatest of signings, but he fills a short term need. Hopefully by the time his contract is up Wil Myers will be ready!
Not a huge fan of this, but also not totally against it. Lets face it, the difference between John Buck and Jason Kendall is maybe one wins. Not much. Neither will be around very long, and Kendall is cheaper.
Just looked it up to be sure, and yep, Barajas is Pudge in his Prime at Kauffman. 61 AB's, .344 avg, 7 homers. I wouldn't expect that to keep up, but I'd like to see what he could do with a full season there.
For the Royals, I'd take Barajas. Seems like every time I'd go to a game the Royals were playing against him, he'd destroy us. Lets sign him just so he can't hurt us anymore!
Signing guys to these contracts offer the team zero risk. Signing many of them increases your chances of finding that "diamond in the rough." Maybe its not the big splash in free agency that some people want to see, but we all know that after the Jose Guillen and Kyle Farnsworth debacles it might be awhile before the Royals go for that big splash again!
Jose Guillen has one discernable skill for a major leaguer, the ability to hit. And for a corner outfielder, he's an average bat at best. He can't run, he can't field, and his arm isn't anything like it used to be. He's not worth a roster spot, much less $12 million a year! That is the one contract I wish Dayton could undo.